Final Matabeleland North civil servants’ relocation by December
Sikhumbuzo Moyo, [email protected]
GOVERNMENT has pledged to quickly attend to outstanding water and electricity connections to civil servants’ houses in Lupane paving the way for the relocation of all officers to Matabeleland North province before the end of December this year.
Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution in Matabeleland North, Richard Moyo, yesterday said he expects the pending service connections to be sorted soon to allow for the smooth relocation of workers, including his office.
Most civil servants from Matabeleland North are still operating from the Mhlahlandlela Government Complex in Bulawayo, which cripples the efficiency of services while bleeding the fiscus in terms of costs.
Speaking on the sidelines of a provincial meeting of heads of Government departments in Bulawayo yesterday, the minister said it was high time civil servants deployed to his province relocated to Lupane.
“I see no reason why we should be operating from Bulawayo when running Matabeleland North. So, by the end of the year, everyone working for the province should have relocated,” he said.
“Our offices are ready, houses are ready including mine. We just need to have water and electricity connections then we are good to go hence my confidence that by December, everyone should be stationed in Lupane,” said Minister Moyo.
Earlier in his official address, Minister Moyo said the next five years were not going to be business as usual and as he challenged civil servants to work hard and deliver tangible results in line with Government targets.
He said the road map has already been cut out as expressed in President Mnangagwa’s inauguration speech and charge to ministries after last week’s Cabinet appointments.
Minister Moyo said all departments must accelerate the growth of the provincial gross domestic product (GDP) by ensuring that the vulnerable communities are prioritised and ensuring that no place and no one was left behind.
Regarding ongoing development projects, he said these will be accelerated taking into account the need to meet the transformative targets towards Vison 2030.
“You are the team that has been mandated by our Constitution to be directly involved in development planning and stimulating economic development, thus, contributing immensely to provincial development under the devolution agenda,” said Minister Moyo.
“These are the responsibilities, which you have to take with professionalism and transparency. As His Excellency (President Mnangagwa) alluded to, this country belongs to the people and not to us. Whatever we do, let us respect the people, especially elder people because their perception of Government is based on who they meet in our respective offices,” said Minister Moyo.
He emphasised the need for unity of purpose as a driver of progress saying Matabeleland North has the potential of realising growth of infrastructure, and provincial economy, which will ultimately result in improved lifestyles for ordinary people.
Minister Moyo said the attainment of Vision 2030 required everyone to work tirelessly and implored heads of departments to effectively utilise devolution funds as they are one of the 14 pillars meant to drive the country forward.
“The utilisation of devolution funds should take into consideration community-driven expectations and national aspirations. Therefore, extensive and inclusive consultation should be carried out when coming up with projects to be implemented in each and every district,” he said.
“This calls for us to be proactive in our interventions especially with the manner in which we utilise the devolution funds.
“The ultimate aim is to bring services to our communities in the shortest space of time and distance. To this end, let me highlight that my office will be keenly interested in how you are using these funds.
“Periodically, reports have to be submitted to my office indicating the progress being made in all the inter-governmental funded projects as that is part of my office’s mandate, which I intend to carry out diligently,” said Minister Moyo.
For a number of decades, Matabeleland North was regarded as one of the marginalised provinces in the country where its communities have been presented as poverty-stricken with poor basic infrastructure development such as hospitals, schools, colleges, roads and universities.
However, when President Mnangagwa came into power the province has started registering commendable development bringing the once neglected province at par with others through rolling out life-changing projects such as construction of dams, bridges, schools, clinics and irrigation infrastructure, among others.